News / Africa

Muslim Brotherhood Member Denies Group Supports Terrorism

Protesters hold up an effigy of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak during a a mock funeral at Tahrir Square in Cairo, February 7, 2011
Protesters hold up an effigy of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak during a a mock funeral at Tahrir Square in Cairo, February 7, 2011

Multimedia

Audio
  • Mohammed ElBeltagy, a leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Guidance Council, spoke with Clottey

Peter Clottey

A prominent member of Egypt’s officially-banned Muslim Brotherhood has denied speculation the growing influence of his group, due to the ongoing crisis, will create a future haven for terrorists who could launch attacks on Israel and some Western countries.

Mohammed ElBeltagy, a leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Guidance Council, told VOA his organization will honor all of Egypt’s peace treaties, including that of Israel.

“The Muslim Brotherhood is not a terrorist organization; it has no dealings with the terrorists; (it) has no history of violence of a sort and we are not calling for a monopoly in the government. We are not running for (the) presidency. All we are calling for is participation in the parliament,” ElBeltagy said. “The ultimate goal for the Muslim Brotherhood is that Egypt becomes a civil country that bases its values on freedom, liberty, equality, social justice and that all of these will lead to prosperity for all Egyptians.”

This came after the Egyptian government decided to raise the salaries of government employees by 15 percent, the latest action in government attempts to quell anger from protesters calling for the ouster of beleaguered President Hosni Mubarak.

But, ElBeltagy said the increase, in his words, "is meant to sidestep the demands of the protesters."

“These are maneuvers to get around what is going on here because the economic rights are not the only rights that the people are asking for. This is not a revolution of hungry people; this is a revolution for freedom, democracy and civil liberties,” said ElBeltagy.

“These are promises that we are not sure that government can fulfill because they haven’t fulfilled previous promises until now. What we are asking for is not just economic prosperity, but civil rights, equality, freedom, justice and freedom of speech and freedom of election. So, it’s not just all about economics.”

ElBeltagy also said his group will not break the country’s peace treaties with other nations.

“The Muslim Brotherhood will honor all the peace treaties that Egypt has signed and we will not change anything. I do emphasize again that the Muslim Brotherhood will honor and respect all those treaties that were signed with any country in the world,” ElBeltagy said.

Meanwhile, thousands of Egyptian opposition activists occupied Cairo's Tahrir square for a 14th day Monday.  Some protesters have planted tents in the square vowing to remain until Mr. Mubarak quits the post he has held for almost 30 years.

U.S. President Barack Obama said Egypt is "making progress" on the negotiating path between the government and opposition leaders.

Mr. Obama made the statement in Washington Monday, a day after Egypt's vice president met with a range of opposition groups in a bid to defuse two weeks of anti-government demonstrations.

You May Like

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

Russia’s Prosecutor General to Review Legality of Baltics Independence

Move, announced Tuesday, has alarmed Baltic States and strained even further their increasingly tense ties with Moscow More

US Urged to Keep Up Pressure on Cuba Rights

Communist government continues to hold dozens of political prisoners, tightly restricts freedom of expression, uses threats, intimidation to discourage critics, according to activist groups More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Interneti
X
Mike O'Sullivan
June 30, 2015 8:20 PM
Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Syrians Flee IS Advance in Hasaka

The Syrian government said Monday it has taken back one of several districts in Hasaka overrun by Islamic State militants. But continued fighting elsewhere in the northern city has forced thousands of civilians from their homes. In this report narrated by Bill Rodgers, VOA Kurdish Service reporter Zana Omer describes the scene in Amouda, where some of the displaced are taking refuge.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video S. Korea Christians Protest Gay Rights Festival

The U.S. Supreme Court decision mandating marriage equality nationwide has energized gay rights supporters around the world. Gay rights remain a highly contentious issue in a key U.S. ally, South Korea, where police did a deft job Sunday of preventing potential clashes between Christian protesters and gay activists. Kurt Achin reports from Seoul.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Nubians in Kenya Face Land Challenges

East Africa's ethnic Nubians have a rich cultural history that dates back thousands of years, but in Kenya they are facing hardships, including the loss of lands they have lived on for generations. They say the government has reneged on its pledge to award them title deeds for the plots. VOA's Lenny Ruvaga reports.
Video

Video Military Experts Question New Russian Tank Capabilities

Russia has been showing off its new tank design – the Armata T-14. Designers claim it is 20 years ahead of current Western designs - and driving it feels like playing a computer game. But military analysts question those assertions, and warn the cost could be too heavy a burden for Russia’s struggling economy. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.
Video

Video In Syrian Crisis, Social Media Offer Small Comforts

Za’atari, a makeshift city in Jordan, may be the only Syrian refugee camp to tweet its activities, in an effort to keep donors motivated as the war in Syria intensifies and the humanitarian crisis deepens. Inside the camp, families say mobile phone applications help hold together families that are physically torn apart. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.

VOA Blogs